In order to continuously grow our steps of hope, we aim to create sustainable programs that help students flourish even when they have finished their education at KIRAN. For students who reach 14 years and are unable to continue down the path of mainstream education, we provide a variety of opportunities. These programs allow students to sharpen their skills in areas that can provide them with purpose and financial stability in the future.
Wood workshop (Carpentry & IQ Toys): 2 Years Course
Through the help of dedicated staff, students are able to gain knowledge and safety understanding to create high-quality wooden goods that are both used throughout KIRAN Village and sold in Varanasi. We label each item with the proud stamp of “Made by Student with Different Abilities” to allow our customers to know more about KIRAN and the wonderful people that make it up. All of these good become found at KIRAN Village, in our Suoroyday Shop & Café in the heart of Varanasi, and online through the link in the sidebar.
- IQ Toys: At KIRAN, we work to encourage students to see the needs within their own communities and find ways to contribute to solutions. The IQ Today division of the Wood Workshop brings this to light by teaching students to create therapeutic, mind challenging, and stimulating wooden toys and puzzles that can be used to encourage cognitive growth and in classrooms as math tools and visual learning aids. Founded in the year 2006, this opportunity has grown a lot and we are eager to expand our array of goods in the future.
- Carpentry: Following the same ideology, a primary focus of our carpentry department is the creation of special chairs, standing tables, and corner chairs for students who have physical different abilities that make it challenging for them to sit upright or at a desk in class. In addition, students learn to create a wide range of basic types of furniture such as tables, chairs, and benches that are used throughout campus and brought to our outreach camps in the wider community.
2. Horticulture and Organic Farming: 2 Years Course
KIRAN provides training in general gardening work and organic farming all throughout our increasingly green KIRAN Village. Although we strive to be as eco-friendly as possible, we know there will always be a long way to go and we invite our students to spearhead the mission, encouraging them to bring their ideas for a more sustainable campus to light. Students become experts in preparing flower beds, trimming herbs, cultivating roses, preparing seeds for the nursery, and identifying different plants. For those interested in farming, we have courses dedicated to the preparation, irrigation, tilling, and harvesting of the land that helps us feed our ever growing community.
Our farming program is currently in a transition to 100% organic practices. Throughout the year KIRAN has phased out chemical fertilizers, pesticides, and herbicides while developing our own organic methods for maintenance. The trainees have been an integral part of this transition learning firsthand the methods of organic farming and creating their own organic fertilizers, pesticides, and herbicides.
3. Tailoring: 1 Year Course
KIRAN provides training in custom design and tailoring of men, ladies, and children’s garments, bags, pillows, and bedding. We encourage creativity by educating our students on a variety of knitting and embroidery techniques. Our tailoring is our oldest VST program and it is still led by the dedicated staff who started it years ago. Throughout the process, our goal to encourage the independence and agency of our talented students has remained. Many students have gone onto start their own businesses and employ others.
4. Bakery: 2 Years Course
In the Bakery Unit our students with different abilities have the opportunity to develop their skills as a baker. KIRAN provides training in the production of bread, cakes, biscuits, muesli, peanut butter, cookies, and other delicious treats. The Bakery program provides employment at our Suoroyday Shop & Café in the heart of Varanasi and opens the door for future self-employment. To serve the greater community, we also fulfill small and bulk orders for schools, cafes, and other organizations throughout the city.
5. Art & Design: 2 Years Course
KIRAN provides training in the designing and manufacturing of artworks and handicrafts using a variety of artistic techniques and skills. The Art & Design unit produces screen printed cards, hand-painted scarves, batiks, different embroidery work, handmade paper bags, and other unique crafts. The Art & Design program focuses on individual creativity and unique designs to provide the skills and knowledge for independent work and self-employment. All of the products created through this unit are available locally through our Suryoday Shop & Café and online through the link in the sidebar.
6. Food Processing & Preservation: 2 Years Course
KIRAN provides basic training in food processing and preserving. Trainees learn to create goods such as jams, jellies, various pickles, chutneys, and syrups. After completion of this program, trainees have an opportunity to gain employment in facilities manufacturing these items and the possibility of self-employment. All of the products created through this unit are available locally through Suryoday Shop & Café and online through the link in the sidebar.
Saksham Grihini is a program that brings light to young women from rural areas that did not have the opportunity to finish primary school or receive any education due to unfavorable circumstances. Through this program, these students are given basic education in math, general knowledge, nutrition, health, and first aid. In addition, they gain skills in tailoring, food preparation, and child care. Annually, the group is able to take an educational, exposure visit to the city of Varanasi. Recently, this program has been working with the horticultural training program to create a rooftop garden which has brought a further abundance of vegetables and flowers to our campus.
The focus of this program is to offer basic education and training for young women who otherwise would not have the opportunity. Many of these students will return to their families to become mothers at the end of their time at KIRAN and our goal is to enable them to continue on their path with more confidence, self-agency, and knowledge. Our primary goal is to develop a basic understanding of health, safety, and their rights as women in hopes of creating more independence in their livelihood and future.